Today I am going to talk about how to learn Spanish watching movies or DVDs. I will also talk about a pitfall to lookout for when learning Spanish watching movies or DVDs. I will also discuss some Spanish vocabulary words used in Colombia that are different from the Spanish vocabulary words that I have learned from my friends from other Latin American countries. I will begin with telling you a story which is actually an entry in my personal journal from the fall of 2006 when I was still living in a coastal city of Colombia called Barranquilla:
Today, I went on a “cita” (date) with a “muchacha” (girl). I took her to the “cine” (movies). The date started out with the same Spanish vocabulary words that I am familiar with.
We went to the “cine” or movie theatre to see a “película” or film. But when we got to the concession stand that’s when all the vocabulary that I had learned quickly changed.
I ordered two coca colas and “palomitas” or popcorn. By the way, “palomitas” literally means “little pigeons.” But when I placed my order for “palomitas” or popcorn, my date said to me that “acá en Colombia se dice crispeta,” or, at least, “crispeta” was more commonly used than “palomitas” in Barranquilla.
“O.K. no problem,” I thought. At least she was also familiar with the word “palomitas.” But then I noticed that I forgot the drinking straws for our sodas.
“Donde están los sorbetes?,” I asked the señorita behind the counter. And she looked at me as if I was speaking English instead of Spanish. Apparently, in Colombia “drinking straws” are not called “sorbetes,” they are called “PITILLOS”
In Barranquilla, “sorbetes” is a type of “bebida helada” or iced beverage.
I guess my own Spanish vocabulary has been influenced by Puerto Ricans and Dominicans since there are many Puerto Ricans and Dominicans that live in New York City which is where I had lived my entire life.
Back to my date at the movies in Barranquilla. After we got our “palomitas” and “sorbetes,” I mean “CRISPETA” and “PITILLOS,” we found two seats and sat down to watch the latest James Bond movie: Casino Royale.
I had already seen the movie exactly 2 weeks before in the Bronx (minus the Spanish subtitles). But I didn’t tell my date and I pretended as if I was watching the movie for the very first time. But then towards the end of the movie I noticed something strange… Streaming Gratuit
I was only one in the entire movie theatre that had been laughing. Of course, I know that James Bond’s movies are not comedy movies. But if you saw the movie then you know there were several really funny parts in the movie.
At first I considered that there may be a cultural difference and it is not considered polite to laugh in a movie theatre. But that couldn’t be it.
Then I realized what it was…
The Spanish subtitles couldn’t communicate the humor the same way it was communicated verbally in English. Something was lost through the translation.
For example, there was one scene in the movie where James Bond finds out that he has been betrayed by his lover. And according to the subtitles, after finding out that his lover had just betrayed him James Bond calls her a “perrita” which literally means female puppy. The Spanish word “perrita” actually has kind of an affectionate ring to it. And “female puppy” doesn’t come close to the five letter English word that James Bond used with his British accent to describe the woman that had just jilted him.